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Troll-hunting hack 'n slash Fimbul chills 'til November

Alright, best two out of three.

Trolls are the worst, really. They’re big, smelly, angry and ceaselessly insistent on telling you that diversity is killing sci-fi. As such, I find it hard to disagree with any viking that decides to make slaying them into a career. Coming from Danish studio Zaxis (who funded stylish and similarly themed but hollow strategy-RPG Wartile), Fimbul is an isometric hack n’ slash adventure with a low-fi/comicbook aesthetic, and a lot of very big and ornery trolls to stab during the Fimbul Winter, the last big freeze before Ragnarök.

While the teaser trailer below is a little bit underwhelming (and gives little idea of how the game actually works), we can glean a lot more from the developer’s Twitter feed, which is full of tantalising little gameplay clips. While there do seem to be some fights against other humans, the stars of the show are the trolls and giants themselves. Big stompy things that can flatten swarms of grunt soldiers, and require better tactics than ‘run up and stab its ankles’ to bring down.

While I’m not sure that the art-style of the game itself screams ‘comic book’ to me, I do like the look of it. Sparse use of textures and stark shading give it a pleasing aesthetic, especially from the isometric perspective that normal gameplay is locked to. I do hope the clips of the player being ragdolled flailing through the air are just a regular part of combat – if I’m fighting giants, I want to occasionally be punted half a mile away, only to dust myself off and charge in again. It’s just part of the experience.

Norse mythology is perhaps getting a little overplayed in fantasy games right now (the aftershocks of Skyrim’s impact are still being felt), but I’ve always been a fan of fighting very big and very stompy monsters in games. I’m intrigued as to whether Fimbul’s combat engine is robust enough to allow such David and Goliath conflicts without making it feel like I’m just whittling away at a health bar, but until I can get my hands on it, Fimbul has my attention at the very least.

Fimbul is slated for a November launch. You can wishlist it over on Steam here.

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Dominic Tarason

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